Kovu Moyoni

Swahili novel based on the land clashes in the Mt. Elgon area of Kenya from 2005-2008.

Kovu Moyoni ni hadithi ya kusisimua inayosimulia matukio katika kijiji cha Siloko katika nchi huru ya Tandika. Inahusu mapambano ya mjane mmoja dhidi ya utawala dhalimu unaolinda na kulifadhili genge la wanamgambo la vijana wanaoshambulia na kupora kijiji cha Siloko kwa kisingizio cha kuondoa watu wasio wenyeji. Serikali ambayo Boke anatarajia imlinde na mali yake inafeli katika jukumu lake la kimsingi na badala yake inalinda kundi lenye uwezo mkubwa la wanyakuzi wa ardhi na mibabe wa kivita.

Kovu Moyoni ('Scar in the Heart') is a fast moving story set in a fictional village of Siloko in a post-independent nation called Tandika. It is the story of one widow's struggle against an oppressive regime represented by a local militia group, 'Jeshi la Vijana' or the ''Youth Army', who attack and plunder her village of Siloko under the pretext of cleansing non-natives. The government to which Boke looks to protect her and her property fails in its primary responsibility and instead protects the criminally powerful cartel of land-grabbers and war-lords. This story is heart-breaking if shocking. But the author keeps tight reign on the narrative act: beautifully rendered the prose flows effortlessly painting the horrors and pathos of a community under siege. In this novel, Professor John Habwe displays a maturity that offers insight and depth into the psychology of violence and post-colonial oppression. It is a story that will disturb and prick your conscience. If this story is a depiction of Boke's various scars inflicted by a modern day corrupt state, it is also a statement about our own complicity. It is a story of love, loss, alienation and hope. It is a celebration of the human spirit that refuses to die in the face of untold suffering.

Creation date: 2014-07-28

162 Pages

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